A new dog means added responsibilities. When you bring a Belgian Malinois into your home you make a commitment to raise, train, and care for your Malinois throughout his lifetime. This can often mean responsibility that spans the next 14 -16 years. The following questions will help you in deciding if the breed characteristics of the Belgian Malinois makes him the right breed for you.
Do You Have Time to Socialize and Train Your Malinois?
The Belgian Malinois is an active, intelligent dog that requires early exposure to different people and dogs so that he will be accepting of them later in life. The Malinois requires training to channel his energy into useful activities. A puppy socialization or puppy kindergarten class is recommended for your Malinois puppy. Formal obedience training in a group obedience class will help your Malinois become a welcome member of the human community.
Do You Want a Dog Living in Your House?
The Malinois develops a strong attachment toward the people in his life. He does not do well in a kennel situation. He is at his best when allowed to become a member of the family. The Malinois is double-coated and does shed.
Do You Have a Fenced Yard?
The Malinois likes to play hard and needs daily exercise. Daily walks will not satisfy him unless you are an avid runner who jogs 5 miles a day with your dog! A fenced yard is necessary to provide a safe area for you to exercise your dog. Many Malinois enjoy playing retrieve games.
Can You Afford a Dog?
A new dog is a lifetime commitment and the cost of his care is a necessary consideration. Will your budget allow for the cost of food and veterinary care including annual veterinary visits for preventive vaccinations and physical exams?
Will a Malinois Fit Into Your Lifestyle?
How many hours a day will your Malinois be left alone? The Malinois’s high activity level and keen intelligence are characteristics that can get him into trouble if boredom sets in. While many people must leave their Malinois alone for eight hours while they go to their jobs, the successful owner limits activities that would keep him away from his dog after work. The Malinois likes to be included in all your activities so if you like jogging, hiking, running, biking, obedience training, nature, and the out of doors then the Malinois may be a good choice for your lifestyle. However, if you often work extended hours, and are already over-committed to family and friends then perhaps this is not a good time to be considering a dog at all.
Is a Puppy the Right Choice For You?
Many individuals who do not have the extra time nor the expertise required to raise, socialize, and train a young puppy would prefer to start with an older puppy or young adult. Young adult Malinois may be available through the American Belgian Malinois Club’s Breed Rescue Program. Many breeders often have older puppies or young adults available that would make wonderful loyal pets and companions. If you don’t have the extra time and energy necessary to raise a puppy then consider the adult Malinois. Malinois rescue: http://www.malinoisrescue.org/